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Joe Metheny, The Man Who Sold the Public Human Meat

The story of Joe Metheny is horrifying and enlightening at the same time. No more street food, I suppose
The story of Joe Metheny is horrifying and enlightening at the same time. No more street food, I suppose

In December 1996, when Joe Metheny was taken into custody on charges of assault, the police anticipated a struggle. The 450-pound, 6’1″ lumberjack had a reputation for losing his cool. They anticipated at least some form of violent opposition.

The mildness of the confession startled the authorities, especially when Metheny added, “I’m a really sick guy.” That wasn’t something they hadn’t anticipated hearing.

Metheny confessed to the police about how he brutally raped, killed, and mutilated homeless people and sex workers. These victims, however, merely functioned as a stand-in for his ultimate target, his fugitive girlfriend.

Joe Metheny in a file photo

Joe Metheny in a file photo

Then, Metheny admitted to his gruesome deeds. He fed the victim’s flesh to other unaware individuals and ate part of it himself.

The character Mr. Meat is based on Joe Metheny.

Who Was Joe Metheny and What Did He Do?

Joe Metheny, a rapist and serial killer from the Baltimore, Maryland, area, lived from March 2, 1955, until August 5, 2017. Although he claimed to have murdered 13, only two killings were proven to have occurred.

According to Metheny, his mother ignored her six children. At the same time, she worked double shifts, and his father was an alcoholic who died in a car accident when Metheny was six. He had been neglected as a child, which caused him to become despondent.

Joe Metheny became a drug addict during the war

Joe Metheny became a drug addict during the war

According to Metheny, his parents frequently placed him in “foster-like” living situations with various families.

Metheny made the bogus assertion that his mother had passed away. His mother maintained that although they were somewhat in need and that she had to work long hours as a waitress, bartender, and food truck driver, she had given her kids a normal upbringing. They had never gone without food or been placed in other families’ homes, as Metheny had alleged.

She claimed that Metheny was a better-than-average student who was always kind and kind to others. She claimed this “He was intelligent and had a happy upbringing. He was to blame if he was ignored. It was a decent house.”

When Metheny turned 18 in 1973, he enlisted in the American Army. Although he claimed to have done a Vietnam tour and developed a heroin addiction while serving in an artillery regiment there, his mother stated that he had served in Germany.

His mother denied knowing anything about him having served in Vietnam, and press reports said that the details of his service were unreliable, as American participation in Vietnam was over by then.

After he entered the Army, Metheny hardly ever spoke to his mother. She stated: “He continued to stray more and farther away. In my opinion, the worst thing that could have happened to him was drugs. This is a very sad story.”

How Did Joe Metheny Kill?

Ironically, Metheny’s 1990s moniker “Tiny” came from his 6’1″ height, huge build, and excess weight. He had been frequenting bars, residing in makeshift camps in South Baltimore with groups of homeless guys, and spending almost all of his money on crack, heroin, and alcohol.

He was, nonetheless, a forklift driver who had a steady job and was well-liked, bright, and well-spoken.

In 1994, Metheny killed 39-year-old Cathy Ann Magaziner and dumped her body on the premises of the factory where he had previously worked. For more than two years, the body stayed there. Later, he claimed that he had strangled her and that, six months later, he unearthed her skeleton, placed her skull in a box, and discarded it.

In a related case, Metheny was prosecuted for murder in 1995 on charges that he had used an axe to murder Randy Piker and Randall Brewer at a tent city campground for the homeless under the Hanover Street Bridge in Baltimore.

Methney leading investigators to scenes of crimes

Methney leading investigators to scenes of crimes

Larry Amos was found guilty of stealing the murder weapon and using it to kill Everett Dowell, another homeless man, following arguments between opposing groups of homeless men. On August 2, 1995—the day Dowell was killed—the remains were found.

Amos was detained, charged with first-degree murder, and later admitted guilt to the lesser charge of manslaughter. After serving one year and nine months of an eight-year sentence, he was allowed to leave prison. Although a jury found Metheny not guilty of killing Brewer and Piker in July 1996, he later claimed that he was responsible for those slayings.

In the middle of November 1996, Metheny fatally stabbed Kimberly Lynn Spicer. On December 8, 1996, he abducted Rita Kemper and attempted to rape her. Prosecutors claim that he and Kemper shared drugs at the trailer where he resided at the pallet plant.

He pursued her after she fled the trailer and refused to have sex with him. After beating her and dragging her back inside, he attempted to rape her by pulling down her pants. According to Kemper, he attempted murder when he threatened to kill her and bury her with the other females in the woods.

She escaped the trailer through a window and ran away from the nearby police officers.

After killing Spicer a month earlier, Metheny hid her body at the industrial site. He then contacted a friend to assist him in burying the body. On December 15, 1996, the friend called the police to report it; the same day, Metheny was taken into custody and charged with the friend’s death.

(Left) Joe Metheny at the time of his death (Right) Joe Metheny in prison

(Left) Joe Metheny at the time of his death (Right) Joe Metheny in prison

As they left a holiday party, the company’s owner was also detained and accused as an accessory after the fact for allegedly destroying evidence. Along with the murder of Spicer, Metheny started to admit to additional killings. He sent law enforcement officers to the small grave where he had reburied Magaziner’s severed head.

Although a large portion of the skull was gone, the authorities could recognize Magaziner thanks to dental records.

According to the police, he selected young, white sex workers who were cocaine and heroin addicts. The murders apparently included horrendous sexual assaults. He was charged with murdering Toni Lynn Ingrassia, a 28-year-old woman, but the accusations were eventually withdrawn due to a lack of evidence.

Aside from his confession, he claimed to have killed three additional prostitutes on Baltimore’s Washington Boulevard. However, there was no other proof of most of these crimes.

How Did Metheny Turn his Victims into Burgers?

Metheny also disclosed some unsettling details about what he had done with the remains after killing his victims during the course of his interrogation.

He was transforming them into burgers in certain instances. According to Joe Metheny, “I chopped the (human) meat up, put it in some Tupperware dishes, and put it in a freezer. I established a tiny open-pit meat stand.

“I ate sandwiches with actual roast meat and pork. They were excellent. The taste of the human body was highly reminiscent of bacon. No one can tell the difference if it’s combined.”

Methney turned his victims into burgers

Methney turned his victims into burgers

In fact, it appeared that nobody could distinguish between the two or that nobody could have possibly imagined that they were eating human meat.

The number of persons who ate Metheny’s hamburgers has yet to be discovered. “So, the next time you’re traveling down the road and encounter an open-pit beef stall that you’ve never seen before, make sure you think about this story before you take a bite of that sandwich,” Metheny himself later remarked in an interview.

He claimed to have thrown dead victims into the Patapsco River, where they were never discovered. The Baltimore Sun stated in 1997 that although he claimed to have killed up to 10 individuals, it was unclear how accurate his assertions regarding the number were.

Never once did Metheny express regret for the crimes he perpetrated. He asserted that his sole regret did not have the opportunity to kill his ex-girlfriend and the man she fled with.

What Happened with Joe Metheny?

He received a 50-year term for kidnapping and attempting a sexual assault after being tried in the Kemper case in 1997. He was cleared of trying to kill her.

In 1998, he received a death sentence for the murder of Spicer. At his sentence hearing, he claimed that he only had himself to blame for his murderous behavior and that he “enjoyed it, got a thrill out of it, got a high out of it.”

Joe Metheny's death announced

Joe Metheny’s death announced

He admitted to killing and robbing Magaziner in August 1998, and the prosecution also sought the death sentence in that instance. In one instance, he was given a life sentence.

In 2000, his death sentence was reversed, and Spicer’s murder conviction was changed to life in prison without the possibility of release. Although the evidence showed that robbery was not the killer’s motivation, the death penalty was dropped because the murder had been committed while committing a robbery.

How Did Joe Metheny Die?

On August 5, 2017, Metheny was discovered dead in his cell at the Western Correctional Institution in Cumberland, Maryland. He was initially discovered in an unresponsive state, and was soon declared dead. Joe Metheny’s  cause of death has been withheld from the public.

Next, read about the Horrific True Story of the Guarapiranga Reservoir Alien Mutilation, and then, about the Yuba County Five: The Boys Who Went Missing!


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Written By

Abin Tom Sebastian, also known as Mr. Morbid in the community, is an avid fan of the paranormal and the dark history of the world. He believes that sharing these stories and histories are essential for the future generations. For god forbid, we have seen that those who forget history are doomed to repeat it.

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